Going SolarBelieving that our youth, especially those in their middle school years, are the biggest proponents of change, in 2001 TransOptions began searching for a program that would introduce students to alternatives to the use of gasoline as a transportation fuel. What we found was an outstanding educational program known as Junior Solar Sprints (JSS). Like all of TransOptions’ Environmental Education programs, JSS correlates to NJ Core Curriculum Content Standards.
What is it?The Junior Solar Sprints program is a perfect example of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education. JSS engages students to design, build and race solar-powered model cars with materials (including solar panels) that TransOptions provides, free of charge.
- A list of materials provided can be found on our JSS Materials and Resources page.
- Additionally, our Photo and Video Library can help you to generate ideas about model car design.
- JSS Race Rules
After months of building, testing and experimentation, students compete for the fastest, most-innovative and best-engineered vehicles. The winners from these division races go on to compete against the best-of-the best at our Inter-County final competition.
Who can participate?Middle School students (grade 6-8) from Morris, Sussex, Warren and suburban Essex, Passaic and Union Counties are eligible to participate in the program which culminates each May in four division races.
The popularity of the event is evident in the press coverage it receives. Reporters and photographers from New Jersey's daily newspapers, such as the Star Ledger, Daily Record and New Jersey Herald are present at each of the five races, reporting on the progress of teams as they move through the competition.
For more information about this program, contact Cindy Reuther at (973) 267-7600 or send her an email here.
2013 Race Dates and Details
- Division 1 Race - Great Meadows Middle School, Great Meadows, May 13
- Division 2 Race - Hardyston Middle School, Hamburg, May 14
- Division 3 Race - Ridgedale Avenue School, Florham Park, May 22 (Rain or Shine)
- Division 4 Race - New Providence Middle School, New Providence, May 16
- Division 5 Race - Kingwood Township School, Frenchtown, May 17 (Rain date of May 24)
- Inter-County Final Race - Ridgedale Avenue School, Florham Park, May 28 (Rain date of May 30)
Judge arrival 8:00 a.m.
Student arrival 8:30 a.m.
Races end between noon and 1 p.m.
All participants must complete a team form by April 30, 2013 in order to participate.